One of my favorite things I made this past summer was a new recipe I came up with for salsa. I thought it was sort of funny to give a little bit of summer for Christmas. In New England it seems to be Summer one day, and snowing the next. but as I have mentioned before, I absolutely love New England. I was greeted with some shocked reactions at this gift. "You MADE that?" I just don't think it's a very commonly homemade item, at least not around here. It's pretty simple to make as long as you like using your cutting board.
Pineapple Mango Salsa
12 plum tomatoes
1 yellow onion
2 jalapeno peppers
handful of fresh cilantro
1/2c apple cider vinegar
Place a large bowl by your cutting board. Cut the vine ends off of the tomatoes and then chop them roughly into 1/4 inch cubes, into your large bowl they go. Peel and chop your onion, add to bowl.
I find the best way to work with mango is to cut the fruit away from the seed and then peel. Try to get as much as possible off and then the rind will come off pretty easily with a paring knife. chop, and toss into the bowl.
Don't be scared of your fresh pineapple. Slice the top off, and the bottom. and then slide your sharp knife down the sides of the fruit to get the rind off. Once you get rid of all the scary pointy things you are home free. Cut around the center core to get the usable parts, discard everything else. Chop your pineapple and put into the bowl.
When working with your jalapeno you may want to wear gloves, as the sting stays around for a while, so if you touch your mouth or eyes afterwards you will regret it. Cut the ends off and slice in half. Next, if you like mild salsa, which I do, scoop the seeds and white ribs out of the pepper and discard. If you like it hotter you can leave these spicy parts in, finely chop, and add to the bowl.
For the cilantro, I take off the thick stems and then gather the leaves into a pile and chop it up. Add it to the bowl. Mix all of your ingredients and then pour the vinegar over the top. Mix once more, and refrigerate.
Since I was making this to give as gifts I made a LOT of it. But the recipe above will give you plenty for a small crowd.
After refrigerating overnight, I scooped the salsa into some jars I had bought (and washed of course).
The clear jars provide a great view of the lovely freshness inside.
I downloaded a free label template here
In my gift bags I included a Ziploc bag of tortilla chips
Enjoy a little summer in your winter, or remember this recipe when the weather turns warm again, I don't think you will regret it.